"Vegas" review of "Road Trip"

Road Trip  Season 1  Episode 13


Where Vegas tries to make us think it's in the same league as The Sopranos


After considerable consideration (and based on last week’s post), I thought tonight it might be fun to mix it up a bit. Instead of doing lengthy recaps like we have for previous episodes,  I thought it might be enjoyable to try and talk about what I do like about the episode and offer bullet points for the plot points that resonate or may have legs.

With that in mind, let’s dive in! (And yes, the drinking game is still in play as I will note when Dennis Quaid smiles)!

Anytime a cute, young woman is in distress, you can bet Dixon Lamb will be there. And this one was intentionally poisoned (and is part of a family of straight-laced singers, can we guess where this is going? I bet we can). DRINK! Quaid smiles when he meets the singing family later at the Savoy (after the poisoned songbird has been released from the hospital).  DRINK! DRINK!  Quaid smiles twice more before he even gets to the first question for the poisoned songbird. After she answers, he smiles again. DRINK!! A “sketchy looking guy” was hanging around the kitchen at the hotel where they also keep rat poison. Are you buying any of this? I didn’t think so. The poisoned songbird’s father is a controlling jerk who wants her out of the act. But, lo and behold, the poisoned songbird poisoned herself (though she was trying to injury her sister not herself).

Eyeglasses is back! One of the more interesting characters sits down with Katherine to discuss what he knows.  He wants dental work in exchange for his testimony. Who knew he was so wrapped up in good dental hygiene and wanted a good looking mouth of straight teeth?  He doesn’t, he wanted the braces so he could get a wire to pick the lock on his hand cuffs, shoot the deputy and escape.  Katherine tries to stop him by shooting after his fleeing car but he gets away. He ends up at a rundown motel, pilfers a fountain filled with coins and heads for waiting bus. Instead he steals a car with a bad oil leak. Ralph goes after him. Great motel sign. That may be the best part of the whole episode. Ralph and Katherine catch up with Eyeglasses but he gets the slip on them and steals another car, this one with a young boy in the back. All that feels like it is missing is the kitchen sink. Eyeglasses gets away because Ralph and Katherine opt to save the young boy. But Vince and company catch up with Eyeglasses as he is hitch-hiking. They take him back with them and beat the crap out of him. Good news, Eyeglasses will be back, he works for Vince now.

Savino lets Jack know that Daddy Rizzo has sent for someone to take out Jack. Because this is Vegas, the drama stays completely on the surface. Jack gets called out to a peeping tom case because the woman  met him at a fundraiser. Yeah, right. Daddy Rizzo is waiting for him at the house. I think we all know how this story arc ends. Jack will get beat up but somehow escape and Daddy Rizzo will not survive to see Episode 14. But, before he gets dispatched, he finds out that Vince set him up. He gets blindsided by the drug addict he thought he killed earlier in the episode and he and Jack come to a standoff. Daddy tries to kill him and Jack shoots him dead. I’m not surprised and I bet you aren’t either.

The Road Trip of the title refers  to the trip Vince and two of his lieutenants take to pick up a shipment of electronic slot machines. Where, out in the middle of the desert.  Who in their right mind takes a road trip back then without radiator bags tied to the grill of the car?  Hell, we never even went to Vegas Village for groceries without a radiator bag on the front of the car.

I guess this road trip is supposed to remind us of the classic Sopranos episode where Christopher and Paulie were stranded in the woods (Pine Barrens). This arc is nowhere close to being in that league. Savino blames Red for being “trapped in the desert” and doesn’t mean out here in the desert with no water or food. Seems Vince’s dad wanted him to be an engineer.

They end up getting picked up by a rancher and his young daughter and riding in the horse trailer. Kind of fitting all the way around. The young girl is reading To Kill a Mockingbird which was published in July, 1960 so they got that right. Vince and his men tangle with a couple of young thugs at a gas station before they continue on their road trip. The young girl give Vince her copy of the Harper Lee book asa parting gift “for his daughters”. When Vince and his traveling companions get to the man with the slots Bad news! The electronic slots turn out to be French complete with wrong wiring. Beautiful sunset though.

At the end of the episode, we find out Katherine has regrets about Ralph. Do we care?

Does this episode have more vintage early 1960s music than others?

While short on compelling drama, the photography and production design was the best it’s been since the pilot.

What do you think?  Will Ralph and Katherine get together before the end of the season? How will Jack break the news to Mia that he killed her daddy? Will Eyeglasses become a regular?

Hit the comments and tell us what you think!